March 2012

Nursery24 Mar 2012 09:40 am

We are excited to have these new small colored pots.

Well, we don’t have them yet. These were at the Philadelphia Garden Show, so if you were there you already know what we’re talking about, but if not then you are as excited as us for the preview. You are excited, aren’t you?

Photography23 Mar 2012 01:36 pm


White Lightning is opening further…

Whippets23 Mar 2012 12:09 pm

Did I mention that we have whippets? They love to chew on rawhide bones, of course. Who doesn’t?

Sometimes Jason won’t finish his bone and then he’ll try to hide it from Benjamin, who has finished his bone. Whippets are smart though. Benjamin will try to trick Jason into leaving the bone behind. But Jason will figure it out after a few times and then Banjamin will have to come up with a new trick to get Jason’s bone.


Hap won’t let them have the flavored rawhide bones since they leave stains behind. Seems smart.

Their favorite bones of all, though, are the pizza bones.


News23 Mar 2012 10:41 am

In San Diego you can learn about Cactus History.


CACTUS AND SUCCULENT HISTORY: During March, the San Dieguito Heritage Museum presents the history of cactuses and succulents in the San Dieguito area. Learn how Kumeyaay Indians used the plants for clothing, shelter and food. Succulents continue to be popular plants, thanks to their aesthetic value and stingy use of water. Children and their families can decorate a pot and plant a few succulents to take home. The free family activities will be available from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sundays. The museum is at 450 Quail Gardens Drive in Encinitas. Visit or call 760-632-9711.

I’ve never heard of this San Dieguito. I wonder what it is? Apparently it’s the older name for Encinitas in Southern California. Here’s the Heritage Museum:

San Dieguito Heritage Museum

I’d definitely get over there this weekend to learn more about the cultural history of cactus and succulents.

Nursery23 Mar 2012 09:33 am

It’s still just the beginning of spring and yet the earliest cactus flowers keep coming.

Here we see the Echinocereus grandiflora hybrids about to open. This one we call “White Lightning” and it’s got this amazing color even before it’s open.

Misc&News23 Mar 2012 07:05 am

Reader JBot is looking out for you. Recently he brought to our attention that there is a cactus statue available for sale in Richmond. Awesome! Now he wants to make sure you all know that it is still available, and has been marked down from $200 to $75. That seems like a good price. But wait! JBot says,

I bet y’all could get it for $50 or less now…. You know you want that crazy thing!

He must be right about at least one of you out there; you know who you are and you know you want it.

Thanks JBot for the update!

News22 Mar 2012 12:23 pm

via Consumerist.

Blogs22 Mar 2012 10:20 am

It’s true, there are blogs about out there. Be careful.

Ruffly pink Echeveria from Oregon Cactus Blog. And another, too.

Lithops seed capsules with a very thin membrane. Growing Lithops from seed is fun!

Mark’s Leucospermum is finally in bloom in Oakland.

News22 Mar 2012 09:31 am

This is kind of a strange story. The family is lucky nobody got hurt.

TWENTY armed police raided the family home of a Deakin student after he bought a drug made from dried cactus online from Germany….

OK, so that’s the beginning of the story. 20 officers. One student. Must be an extremely serious online offense.

Edwards’ lawyer, Victoria Campbell, told Geelong Magistrates’ Court the house was then raided at 6am on February 9, 2010 with an “extraordinary amount of resources” allocated to a small experimentation….

I should say so.

“Twenty federal police with a battering ram and drawn rifles got the family out of bed … and wouldn’t let them get dressed while they absolutely tore the place apart,” Ms Campbell said.

“It just about gave Mrs Edwards a heart attack and she’s still seeing a cardiologist.”

Scary. This must have been a college student who was at the center of a large international ring of smugglers and dealers.

The Portarlington film student, 26, pleaded guilty to attempting to import a border controlled drug yesterday and was spared a conviction that would hamper his career.

Wait, what? Spared a conviction? But 20 armed officers caught him dead-to-rights. This ever-so-serious cactus offender can’t be let off that easy, can he?

He received a 12-month good behaviour bond and was ordered to pay $500 to Barwon Drug and Alcohol Service.

Incredible! A slap on the wrist for what must be the most serious cactus related offense in the history of Australia, judging by the SWAT team tactics to arrest him in the first place. How can this be?

Commonwealth Prosecutor Ashley Bird said the cactus plant was commonly available in Australia and its dried form which is hallucinogenic is also legal

Wait. It’s all legal in the first place?

…but can not be imported…

Oh. So it’s all legal for use, for sale, for barter, for trade, but just not for import. Well, that makes sense. Now I understand why they needed the 20 armed officers. He IMPORTED an otherwise legal cactus substance. Not on his body, mind you, but he ORDERED IT ONLINE! The horror is palpable.

Good to know.

Questions22 Mar 2012 09:19 am

Jodie sends along a photo.

Hap sends along information.


It looks like the Aeonium has Mealie Bugs, the white messy part is a waxy coating they make to protect themselves from predators. You can clean them off with a Q-tip or artist brush dipped in alcohol (rubbing or drinking). Then follow up with either Insecticidal Soap or Neem Oil spray. Watch for ants, as they farm Mealie Bugs like dairy cows and carry them around to new plants to “milk” them.

Take care,


Nursery21 Mar 2012 11:48 am


The Echinocereus grandifloras are starting their beautiful spring show.


Questions21 Mar 2012 11:31 am

hi there,

i purchased a few succulent plants from your store a couple weeks ago and in recent days started to notice some yellowing (or even drying) of leaves. this is my first time planting anything so i am not sure if it’s common. please see attached pictures and let me know how to better care them.


In general the plants look fine. Succulents lose bottom leaves naturally, so as long as the centers are solid, there’s no real long term problem. However, it looks like you’re losing more bottom leaves than I would like to see. It looks like it could be overwatering. We recommend watering them every 2 weeks – drench them and let the water drain away, never letting them sit in water. If that’s not the problem, let me know how much you’ve been watering and how much sun they’re getting.
News21 Mar 2012 07:46 am

The Nederlands Dans Theater dances with cactus. And it’s a metaphor!

‘I think sometimes the untrained dance or art eye feels they’re supposed to understand something,’ he says. ‘And Cacti is a kind of relief from that, a breath of fresh air.’ As the name suggests, at one point in the piece, each dancer holds a potted cactus. Inevitably, those watching instantly search for the context of these spiky yet beautiful plants….

‘I don’t really have a right answer for what it means, and I hope the audience gets the joke – that they don’t have to analyse it. That’s the comment for the whole piece.’

The metaphor seems to be that there is no meaning to the cactus, and thus to the dance either. Interesting!

Too bad we only have this photo of dancers in flesh colored body suits dancing with cactus and not a video of the performance.

Berkeley Succulents19 Mar 2012 01:05 pm

I think I took this picture on Solano Ave. It looks like a hair salon. I see Aeonium and Sedum. I can’t really tell what’s going on with that pot. Odd thing.

California Native Plants19 Mar 2012 08:05 am

Eriophyllum lanatum ‘Siskiyou’

Regardless of the name, this is a California native. Low growing, wide spreading, cold hardy. Yellow daisy flowers are always a good thing.

California Native Plants18 Mar 2012 11:40 am

This hybrid from native irises, probably including Iris inominata, is called “Pink Parfait”.

It’s compact and like other native irises it’s drought tolerant.

And what does that mean, anyway? Cause it’s certainly an iris which likes regular watering. Well… it doesn’t mean it likes to be dry. It means it can survive being dry. It can survive our very dry summers by going dormant and practically disappearing if you don’t water it. And that’s OK.

Plants17 Mar 2012 11:59 am

I’m feeling sick today. I can’t tell if it’s a cold or an allergy attack. Oh the humanity.

But I can still share pretty succulent pictures with you.

Oooh, that is a pretty picture.

Sedum oaxacanum

We’ve had a run on 4″ sedums this spring. They’re flying off the shelves. Not the larger plants though. I wonder why?

Just from the name, without any googling at all, I would guess this particular stonecrop is from Mexico. More particularly from the Mexican state of Oaxaca. Anyone want to take that bet? There are lots of plants in the Crassulacaea family from Mexico, but then they do find themselves native all around the world, so you never know for sure.

But I can tell you for sure that this next one is native to England. Well, not for sure, but with a name like that it has to be. Right? You know you can trust me. You are reading this on the internets after all.

Sedum anglican from England.

You want to argue with my taxonomies?

News16 Mar 2012 11:18 am

TV! Kansas TV station KWCH is so excited! It blooms only once a century! Although I see from the poll below that nobody likes this kind of story but me.

Apparently it’s become a tourist attraction in Kansas – really! Watch the video and you’ll see people driving up to take pictures of the blooming agave. Tip from Chris.

I love local news.

Nursery16 Mar 2012 10:07 am

Here’s the ad that runs in the Chronicle this weekend.

The sale runs March 17 – 31, 2012

Whippets16 Mar 2012 07:23 am

You can ignore the silly Audi post below.

These are the 2 most popular of my whippet videos on YouTube. I have videos of the dogs playing, meeting the tortoises, chasing sticks on the beach and all kinds of very exciting activities. But these 2 below are by far the most popular. And the titles on them are accurate, to give you an idea what they’re about. But don’t trust me, watch them.


For some reason people like to watch dogs sitting and doing absolutely nothing. Fascinating. Maybe it’s the music.

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